Top Tech News

CIO Today Network Sites:   Top Tech News  |   CIO Today   |   Mobile Tech Today   |   Data Storage Today
News & Product Reviews for Tech Leaders
Neustar, Inc.
Protect your website & network
using real-time information & analysis

www.neustar.biz
Sunday, April 20th 
24/7/365 Network Uptime!
This ad will display for the next 20 seconds. Please click for more information, or scroll down to pass the ad, or Close Ad.
Trending Topics:   Security Heartbleed Big Data Cloud Computing Windows XP Data Centers OS X Mavericks
Home
Network Security
Tech Trends
Cloud Computing
Hardware
Applications
Microsoft/Windows
Apple/Mac
Mobile Tech
World Wide Web
Big Data
Communications
Hackers
Chips & Processors
Linux/Open Source
Personal Tech
Press Releases
 
Free Newsletters
Top CIO News
 
Mobile Tech Today
 

Mobile Tech

Report: Be Wary of Free Android Apps

Report: Be Wary of Free Android Apps
November 6, 2012 11:11AM

Bookmark and Share
Nearly 7 percent of free Android apps could access user address books, the Juniper Networks study found, while slightly more than 2 percent of paid ones could, and 2.5 percent of free Android apps could silently send text messages versus 1.45 percent of paid apps. In other capabilities, such as secretly initiating calls, free apps also outnumbered paid.

Neustar, Inc. (NYSE: NSR) is a trusted, neutral provider of real-time information and analysis to the Internet, telecommunications, information services, financial services, retail, media and advertising sectors. Neustar applies its advanced, secure technologies in location, identification, and evaluation to help its customers promote and protect their businesses. More information is available at www.neustar.biz.

As many as one-quarter of free Android apps track location data. That's one of many findings in a new report that raises security concerns in free apps available in Google Play, the technology giant's online store.

The report audited 1.7 million apps and was undertaken by Juniper Networks' Mobile Threat Center over 18 months in 2011 and 2012. Many of the free apps, the report said, "collect information or require permissions unnecessary for the described functionality of the apps."

This is not the first report to find that mobile apps are collecting, and, in some cases, transmitting information irrelevant to their purported needs. In late 2010, for instance, The Wall Street Journal reported a large portion of sampled smartphone apps were transmitting the device's unique ID to other companies without users' awareness or consent, and some were also sending location, age and other personal details.

Collecting for Local Ads?

However, that story, undertaken two years ago with a much smaller selection, determined that the Android apps it analyzed transmitted less data than iPhone apps that the paper also reviewed.

The more comprehensive Juniper report said that a significant number of Android applications "contain permissions and capabilities that could expose sensitive data or access device functionality that they might not need."

For instance, while some of the Android apps use location data to customize local ads, the report found that many more apps were collecting that information than were actually serving up ads. Nine percent of apps worked with the top five ad networks, but 24.1 percent tracked location.

This fact that so many more free apps are using location tracking than are serving local ads, the company warned, led it "to believe that there are several apps collecting information for reasons less apparent than advertising."

'Most Concerning' Category

In addition, nearly 7 percent of free apps could access user address books, while slightly more than 2 percent of paid ones could, and 2.5 percent of free apps could silently send text messages versus 1.45 percent of paid apps. In other capabilities, such as secretly initiating calls in the background or accessing the device's camera, free apps also greatly outnumbered paid apps.

By category, the "most concerning" were racing games, as well as apps related to cards and casinos. The report recommends that developers correlate permissions to actual app functionality, and that there be better differentiations between kinds of permissions -- such as the difference between an app wanting to place an outgoing call, compared to a financial app that offers the benign convenience of being able to call local branches from within the app. (continued...)

1  |  2  |  Next Page >

 

Tell Us What You Think
Comment:

Name:

Robert:

Posted: 2012-11-07 @ 11:54am PT
NOTHING is without cost....



 Mobile Tech
1. Cortana Fills Windows Phone Gap
2. Galaxy S5 Phone: Less Can Be More
3. Beware: Facebook Shares Your Locale
4. Android Gets Chrome Remote Desktop
5. Amazon 3D Smartphone Pics Leaked




 Most Popular Articles
1. $200 'Micro' 3D Printer Earns Big on Kickstarter
2. Fast Seagate 6 TB Drive Offered for Enterprise Data Centers
3. Resetting All Passwords Now May Be Worst Heartbleed Fix
4. Is Heartbleed the Biggest Web Security Threat Ever?
5. Silverpop: IBM Marketing Portfolio Gets Personal

Have an informed opinion on this story?
Send a Letter to the Editor.
We want to know what you think.
Send us your Feedback.

 Related Topics  Latest News & Special Reports

  Cortana Fills Windows Phone Gap
  Galaxy S5 Phone: Less Can Be More
  Beware: Facebook Shares Your Locale
  Heartbleed Exploit Could Cost Millions
  Poll: A Mix of Feelings on Future Tech

 Technology Marketplace
Business Intelligence
Get real-time, cloud-based information services with Neustar.
 
Cloud Computing
Next Generation Data Center Is Here! Vblock™ Systems from VCE
 
Contact Centers
HP delivers the future of the contact center with HP Qfiniti 10.
 
Data Storage
Next Generation Data Center Is Here! Vblock™ Systems from VCE
Barium Ferrite (BaFe) is the future of tape.
2.5" Enterprise-class SATA & SAS SSDs for server & storage applications
 
Enterprise Hardware
Barium Ferrite (BaFe) is the future of tape.
2.5" Enterprise-class SATA & SAS SSDs for server & storage applications
 
Hardware
Protect your network with APC Smart-UPS battery backup
 
Network Security
Protect your network with APC Smart-UPS battery backup
 

Network Security Spotlight
Heartbleed Could Cost Millions, Could Have Been Prevented
Early estimates of Heartbleed’s cost to enterprises are running in the millions. The reason: revoking all the SSL certificates the bug exposed will come at a very hefty price. Some say it all could have been avoided.
 
Michaels Says Nearly 3M Credit, Debit Cards Breached
Arts and crafts retail giant Michaels Stores has confirmed that a data breach at its POS terminals from May 2013 to Jan. 2014 may have exposed nearly 3 million customer credit and debit cards.
 
Google's Street View Software Unravels CAPTCHAs
The latest software Google uses for its Street View cars to read street numbers in images for Google Maps works so well that it also solves CAPTCHAs, those puzzles designed to defeat bots.
 

Enterprise Hardware Spotlight
Vaio Fit 11A Battery Danger Forces Recall by Sony
Using a Sony Vaio Fit 11A laptop? It's time to send it back to Sony. In fact, Sony is encouraging people to stop using the laptop after several reports of its Panasonic battery overheating.
 
Continued Drop in Global PC Shipments Slows
Worldwide shipments of PCs fell during the first three months of the year, but the global slump in PC demand may be easing, with a considerable slowdown from last year's drops.
 
Google Glass Finds a Home in Medical Education, Practice
The innovative headpiece may find its niche in markets where hands-free access to data can be a big advantage. Glass experiments for doctors are already under way, with some promising results.
 

Mobile Technology Spotlight
Review: Siri-Like Cortana Fills Windows Phone Gap
With the new Cortana virtual assistant, Windows catches up with Apple's iOS and Google's Android in a major way, taking some of the best parts of Apple's and Google's virtual assistants, with new tools too.
 
With Galaxy S5, Samsung Proves Less Can Be More
Samsung has produced the most formidable rival yet to the iPhone 5s: the Galaxy S5. The device is the fifth edition of the company's successful line of Galaxy S smartphones, and shows less can be more.
 
Facebook Rolls Out Potentially Intrusive Location-Sharing
Looking for friends? Facebook users in the U.S. will soon be able to see which of their friends are nearby, using a smartphone's GPS. Could be a cool feature in some cases, or way too much information.
 

Navigation
Top Tech News
Home/Top News | Network Security | Tech Trends | Cloud Computing | Hardware | Applications | Microsoft/Windows
Apple/Mac | Mobile Tech | World Wide Web | Big Data | Communications | Hackers | Chips & Processors
Linux/Open Source | Personal Tech | Press Releases
Also visit these Enterprise Technology Sites
Top Tech News | CIO Today | Mobile Tech Today | Data Storage Today

Services:
FreeNewsFeed | Free Newsletters | XML/RSS Feed

About CIO Today Network | How To Contact Us | Article Reprints | Services for PR Pros (In partnership with NewsFactor) | Top Tech Wire | How To Advertise

Privacy Policy | Terms of Service
© Copyright 2000-2014 Top Tech News. All rights reserved. Article rating technology by Blogowogo. Member of Accuserve Ad Network.